Western Yan

The Western Yan (Chinese: 西燕; pinyin: Xī Yān; 384–394) was a dynastic state ruled by the Xianbei ethnicity during the era of Sixteen Kingdoms in China. It was founded by Murong Hong in 384 in the aftermaths of Former Qin's defeat by Jin dynasty (266–420) at the Battle of Fei River, with the stated intent of permitting the Xianbei, whom Former Qin's emperor Fu Jiān had relocated to Former Qin's capital region after destroying Former Yan in 370. It initially also was intended to rescue the last Former Yan emperor Murong Wei, until he was executed by Fu Jiān in 385. It was a state that was characterized by extreme political instability and internal fighting, as all seven of its rulers (during a short span of 10 years) died of unnatural causes. After eviscerating Former Qin, the people of the state abandoned the Guanzhong region and headed east back toward their homeland, but eventually settled down in modern Shanxi. It was destroyed in 394 as Later Yan's emperor Murong Chui wanted to reunite the people formerly of Yan and conquered it.

Western Yan (西燕)
Sixteen Kingdoms 391 AD.jpg
CapitalChang'an (385–386)
Zhangzi (386–394)
• 384
Murong Hong
• 384–386
Murong Chong
• 386–394
Murong Yong
• Established
• Murong Chong's claim of imperial title
27 January 385[1][2]
• Capturing of Chang'an
• Abandoning of Chang'an
• Settling at Zhangzi
• Disestablished
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Former Qin
Later Yan
Today part ofChina

Some rulers of the Western Yan declared themselves emperors while some declared themselves wang (translatable as either "king" or "prince").

Rulers of the Western YanEdit

Posthumous names Personal name Durations of reign Era names
Murong Hong 384 Yanxing (燕興) 384
Wei Murong Chong 384–386 Yanxing (燕興) 384
Gengshi (更始) 385–386
Duan Sui 386 Changping (昌平) 386
Murong Yi 386 Jianming (建明) 386
Murong Yao 386 Jianping (建平) 386
Murong Zhong 386 Jianwu (建武) 386
Murong Yong 386–394 Zhongxing (中興) 386–394

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "中央研究院網站".
  2. ^ Zizhi Tongjian, vol. 106.